Mariah has her chewing gum holder and J‑Lo has an interior designer as part of her enrourage. Celebrities are known for not doing much for themselves and now they can have their social media managed for them by startup theAudience.
If you’re in the market for media jobs, this is one company that’s going to offer media and tech jobs, and then some.
Featuring a triumvirate of the tech world’s most respected entrepreneurs at the helm, new kid on the block theAudience aims to harness the power of social media and make it work for world-weary celebs who need to grow their fanbase and manage their social media output. However the company’s beginnings have been shrouded in mystery and they won’t even say who their clients are…
What’s the Offer?
Until recently little was known about theAudience other than it was founded by talent agent and brother of Chicago Mayor and former Obama Chief of Staff, Ari Emanuel – himself immortalized in TV drama Entourage — and co-founder of DigiSynd Oliver Luckett who, through the company, managed the social media accounts of some of Disney’s biggest properties, including Cinderella. Together the pair managed to lure in Napster and Facebook originator Sean Parker and the trio began approaching music and movie execs to help their acts manage their social media feeds.
Despite its high-profile founding fathers, theAudience has managed to fly under the radar. Snippets of information appeared here and there, but there was no grand announcement and no cute viral to signal the company’s arrival. This could be due to the nature of its offer. But what is that offer exactly?
The company’s own website gives little away, but a press release issued at the beginning of the year may give the clearest indication.
“theAudience manages the social media presences of global entertainment brands and celebrities and provides an integrated platform for the optimization and activation of their audiences”
So who’s on board?
Ari Emanuel currently heads up the William Morris Endeavor Agency – one of the country’s most powerful talent firms, so it’s a pretty safe bet that when a William Morris star lands a movie or commercial deal, theAudience will step in an negotiate spots in viral videos or online chat shows. What is clear is that theAudience is not just going to be about pumping out tweets and status updates.
The company has recently been pretty active in a recruitment drive – searching out talent for openings such as ‘Content Curator’ and ‘Director of Video Partnerships’, so anyone on the lookout for social media or technology jobs may like to keep their eye on the company’s website.
Since the inception of social media celebrities have dramatically changed the way they interact with their fans yet these channels are rife with pitfalls – to have an experienced and talented team manage your accounts and deliver an excellent ROI in terms of growing fan bases which in turn leads to sell-out gigs, multi-platinum records and movie offers, then there’s no wonder famous faces such as Usher, Charlize Theron, Mark Wahlberg and Hugh Jackman have invested in theAudience. Just why did Rihanna get her guest spot in the move ‘Battleship’? Twenty six million followers on Twitter says she has some serious social media influence and can bring one or two extra cinemagoers to the party.
So it seems that while they’ve remained tight-lipped about their activities, theAudience is quietly managing the reach of their high-profile clients. As Hypebot neatly puts it: “theAudience is quietly trying to build a social media empire fit for the red carpet. Or at least a talent agency for the social media age.”